An accident in Vero Beach early on Saturday, September 27, involved an alleged drunk driver and a young Fort Pierce bicyclist. Vero Beach Police reported that three teens, all teammates on their high school junior varsity football team, were riding their bikes across the 17th Street bridge when a vehicle struck one of them.
The teen was reportedly sent over the bridge railing and into the water below. It was reported that crews were dispatched to search the waters below the bridge, and that the individual's body was recovered a number of hours later. A pastor that was later interviewed suggested that the three students were likely fishing in the vicinity of the bridge prior to the accident.
Felony DUI Manslaughter Charge Follows
Following the incident, a 21-year-old female motorist was subsequently arrested. She was being held in lieu of $500,000 bond on multiple charges. The charges included felony DUI manslaughter, marijuana possession and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The student's high school community was mourning his loss, and prayer services were held in both Vero Beach and Fort Pierce during the weekend. Attendance at the events was reportedly in the hundreds. Also, some people appeared at the site of the accident to place flowers there. The high school that the young man attended planned a Thursday, October 2, memorial service.
This fatal accident involving a teenage bicyclist underscores once again the impact of alleged acts of driving while under the influence. Loss of life under these circumstances is life-altering for family members, friends and so many others.
Nothing can undo a fatal alleged DUI event, but state law does provide a means for addressing the loss of companionship and other losses that survivors experience following such accidents. Wrongful death litigation may follow certain fatal DUI accidents. To discuss an accident that you or a loved one has been involved in, please give us a call. When it is desired, a consultation with an injury attorney in Martin County may be scheduled. Please contact us for additional information.